India’s first dragon blood-oozing tree

  1. Researchers from Assam have discovered Dracaena cambodiana.It is a dragon tree species in the Dongka Sarpo area of West Karbi Anglong.
  2. This is for the first time that a dragon tree species has been reported from India.
  3. This plant yields dragon’s blood which is a bright red resin used since ancient times as medicine, body oil, varnish, incense and dye. 
  4. Several antifungal and antibacterial compounds, antioxidants, flavonoids, have also been extracted from various parts of the plant.
  5. Researchers have said that in India,the Dracaena genus belongs to the family Asparagaceae.It is represented by nine species and two varieties in the Himalayan region,the northeast and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.But Dracaena cambodiana is the only true dragon tree species.
  6. However,recent overexploitation to meet the increasing demand for dragon’s blood has resulted in rapid depletion of the plant.For this reason,the species is already listed in the inventory of Rare and Endangered Plants of China.